Sherrie Hewson: Six facts about the Benidorm star

Sherrie Hewson is one of eight celebrities taking part in 100 Years Younger in 21 Days, a reality show that aims to slow the ageing process. How many of these facts about the actress did you know?

It's fair to say that Sherrie Hewson, who is taking part in new ITV reality show 100 Years Younger in 21 Days, has had some ups and downs in her life.

The former Coronation Street star and Loose Women host is appearing on the ITV reality show in which celebrities commit to a strict diet and exercise regime with the aim of improving their longevity.

[Read more: 100 Years Younger in 21 Days - Who's taking part?]

She also returns to our screens as long-suffering hotel manager Joyce Temple-Savage in a new series of Benidorm this week.

To celebrate, here are a few little-known facts about the 67-year-old actress.

She comes from a showbiz family

Born in Nottingham in 1950, Sherrie had a showbiz background - her father was a singer and her mother was a model.

She herself began performing at the age of six, touring the UK's theatres in revues with her own signature song, You've Got to Have Heart. She later gained a scholarship to study acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (Rada).

She once threw up over one of her heroes

According to her autobiography Behind the Laughter, while training at Rada Sherrie met Hollywood star Steve McQueen, and was tasked with showing him around London.

After his tour – which included a trip on a London bus – McQueen took her to Poissonnerie, a restaurant in Chelsea, to say thank you.

“I didn’t remember 'poisson' meant fish”, she wrote. “I'd never had seafood before and didn't realise I was allergic to it.

“Being a gentleman, Steve ordered for me – a fish stew... after a few spoonfuls my stomach started to rumble like a boiler and my face began to swell and burn.

“As Steve turned to me, realising something was wrong, the trajectory of vomit hit him square on the chest!”

The celebrities taking part in reality show 100 Years Younger in 21 Days.  Photo credit: ITV

She might have married Robert Lindsay

One year ahead of her at Rada was Robert Lindsay, who would go on to starring roles in My Family and Citizen Smith.

The two young acting students became a couple, and according to Sherrie decided to marry after being together for a year.

However, after Lindsay graduated and began to work professionally he became more and more distant from her. “Of course I felt sad, but deep down I knew we’d just got carried away,” she said.

She was once a member of the Carry On team

Early in her career, Sherrie played the supporting role of Carol in the 1975 film Carry On Behind. She also appeared in four episodes of the troupe's TV series Carry On Laughing, and retains fond memories of her time with the team.

“One night Joan Sims and Kenneth Williams did a mock striptease. Kenneth climbed on to a chair and in slow motion dropped his trousers to expose his backside.

“Suddenly the seat gave way and he dropped through but we were all laughing so much no one helped!”

[Read more: Benidorm – Meet the cast of the new series]

She came close to developing anorexia

In 1987, while filming the ITV sitcom In Loving Memory, Sherrie became so stressed that she developed an eating disorder.

“I just stopped eating,” she told the Daily Mirror. “I managed on a bar of chocolate a day, lost two stones in eight weeks and looked like Olive Oyl in Popeye.

“I went down to seven stones at 5ft 7ins and was in danger of developing anorexia. I’m sure it caused the thyroid condition I now have.”

She notes that a comment from co-star Christopher Beeny gave her the “kick up the backside” she required to get her diet – and her health – back on track.

She's still looking for love

Sherrie told The Sun that she has only been on 'a couple of dates' since splitting up from her husband Ken Boyd in 2001 – and none in the past four years.

“Friends of mine always say they wonder why I haven’t got anybody in my life and I explain it’s to do with me”, she told the newspaper.

"Maybe I’ve never met anybody I really fancy, but at the age I am it doesn’t really matter if I never meet anyone, because I’ve got my daughter and my grandchildren."

100 Years Younger in 21 Days begins tonight, Tuesday February 27, at 9pm on ITV.

Benidorm returns on Wednesday, February 28 at 9pm on ITV.

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